One of the most commonly performed cosmetic procedures is the tummy tuck, a surgical procedure that smoothens out the abdomen by removing excess fat and skin which may result from weight loss or pregnancy. After the procedure, the new body contours are often dramatically improved and the procedure is number one in patient satisfaction. When prospective patients are considering the procedure, many of the most frequently asked questions revolve around the recovery period.
A tummy tuck procedure, or abdominoplasty, is often performed on an out-patient basis, meaning that patients do not get admitted to the hospital and can frequently return home on the same day. Depending on the severity of the procedure, some patients may need to spend a night or two in the hospital on rare occasions. However, the intensity and scope of the procedure may certainly impact the recovery period and the length of the healing process.
Recovering from Your Tummy Tuck
After a tummy tuck, many patients spend a few hours in the hospital and then return home under the care of a friend or loved one. It is normal for there to be some swelling around the area, which may be addressed with special post-surgical garments, ice packs and prescriptions. There may also be some pain, which can be managed with medication. Some patients experience additional pain during coughing or deep breathing, which is normal and does not signify a problem.
It is important to take it easy for the first few days following your tummy tuck, and avoid activity for the first five to six days. Many patients are able to return to work or normal activity (without any heavy lifting) after 10-14 days. Vigorous exercise is often achievable in a month or so. The true results of the tummy tuck procedure are generally not visible for two to three months. Incision lines will continue to fade and flatten out for around 12 months.